Conversation with my Mother
MOTHER: I spent a dollar today. ME: What did you buy?
MOTHER: A china cock.
ME: A china cock?
MOTHER: I believe that is the correct terminology for a male chicken.
ME: You bought a porcelain rooster?
MOTHER: I did. And you should see him, Jess. He’s wearing all hand-tailored clothing.
ME: Sounds interesting.
MOTHER: Very. He’s wearing this wonderful, wonderful pair of overalls that crisscross in the back, and a long-sleeved cotton shirt, with a collar that’s buttoned all the way to that thing… that long red thing that hangs under a cock’s neck… and he’s got a big orange beak and a big red comb on his white china head… and black china talons.
ME: Sounds like a real find.
MOTHER: Don’t knock it. It is. And I’ve placed him in the most prominent spot of my kitchen. It’s a good day, darling.
ME: Well, that makes me happy, Mother.
MOTHER: It will be in Brautigan’s inheritance.
ME: You know I hate when you speak like that.
MOTHER: Well, I’m not going to be around forever.
ME: Aww, you know what Brautigan just did?
ME: Lately he’s been taking my glasses off and putting them on Chris’s face, and he just put them on yours, well, on the telephone!
MOTHER: Poor thing. When he finally meets me in person, he’s going to be traumatized. I’ll have to hang a cordless phone around my neck.